Swimming and Diving: UNM Continues MWC Competition With Two Home Meets
Albuquerque, N.M. -The University of New Mexico swimming and diving team is enjoying one of the best starts to its season in several years. A number of swimmers have put up top times over the past few weeks and clinched several first-place finishes. Two Lobo divers are also making a ripple in the competition. Sophomore Becca Barras and junior Tracey Berghian have finished in the top three at every meet so far this season, including the home-opening match on Oct. 26 where Barras grabbed the no.1 spot in both the 3-meter and 1-meter springboard events.
Number-one finishes have not been left only on the shoulders of the team's seasoned veterans. Freshmen Whitney Thomson, Robyn Miller, Kelsey Leckovic and Heather Morsilli have each had one or more first place finishes, giving the Lobos the all-around consistency they have have been lacking in the past.
SATURDAY, OCT. 26 AT HOME
The Lobos swam a tight race against UNLV just over a week ago in their home-opening meet. The Rebels finished the meet with 159 points, while UNM trailed closely behind with 140. New Mexico was able to dominate in seven of the 16 events, including both diving competitions and one of the relays. Six different Lobos were awarded first-place, while seven grabbed second-place spots.
TOP FINISHERS AT HOME
ROBYN MILLER FR YOUNTVILLE, CALIF. The freshman was again strong in the cherry and silver as she finished ahead of Raluca Udroiu, a 2002 MWC two-event titleholder, in the 200-yard free with a time of 1:53.12. Miller also managed to place second in the 200-yard back (2:07.96) and was part of the freshman-filled 200-yard free relay team who came in first with a time of 1:38.22.
WHITNEY THOMSON FR ALLEN, TEXAS Thomson is fastly becoming one of UNMs strongest backstrokers. She finished a clear first in the 100-yard back, almost three seconds ahead of her next competitor, in a time of 58.98. She was also one of three freshman swimmers on the 200-yard free relay team that captured first-place.
KELSEY LECKOVIC FR BURNABY, B.C. Leckovics versatility shines through in every meet, as she consistently records top times in several different events. She was second behind teammate Myra Will in the 50-yard free with a time of 24.50, second again in the 100-yard free in 54.22 and was part of the top-finishing 200-yard free relay team.
HEATHER DILUZIO JR ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. DiLuzio captured the top spot in the 100-yard breast in 1:09.83 and played an important role in the second-place finishing 200-yard medley relay team. DiLuzio also had a strong second-place finish in in the 200-yard breast with a time of 2:29.52.
MYRA WILL SR TILLAMOOK, ORE. The lone Lobo senior has yet to place lower than no.1 in the 50-free this season. Wills time of 24.10 on Oct. 26 at home was her fastest time yet by more than three tenths of a second. She was also a member of the top-finishing 200-yard free relay team.
BECCA BARRAS SO KITCHENER ONTARIO Barras has performed spectacularly to date. Last week, she was named Mountain West Conference Diver of the Week after her superb showing against UNLV. The sophomore got firsts in both springboard events, scoring a 272.56 in the 3-meter and a 259.27 in the 1-meter. Both scores were her best yet and good enough to qualify her for the Diving Zones which will be held March 11-13 in Oklahoma City, Okla.
UP NEXT FOR THE LOBOS
UNM will be at home again this weekend when they play host to San Diego State, BYU and NAU at 6 p.m. on Thursday Nov. 7. The team will then host the annual Lobo Invitational on Friday, Nov. 8 and Saturday Nov. 9.
BYU may be the Lobos toughest competition this year in the MWC. The Cougars finished first in the conference last season and were chosen earlier this season to claim the title for the fourth time.
The biggest threats to the Lobos in the water will most likely be seniors Cortnee Adams and Tamber Covington as well as Jamie Lambert. Adams is a three-time All-American and won seventeen individual events for the Cougars last season. Covington is the 2002 MWC Champion in the 200 breast and runner-up in the 100-yard breaststoke. Lambert is the Cougars swimming sensation. She won the 100-yard breaststroke at the MWC Championships last season and advanced to the NCAAs where she placed 37th in the same event.
On the boards, senior Kelli Einfeldt was the strongest BYU diver, winning five 15 individual events and garnering All-MWC Second -Team honors. She is expected to place in the top-five in the MWC this season.